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The Disney theme parks around the world have undergone major upgrades and remodels over the last few years, and that trend is only continuing as the company adds more lands and attractions to entice guests. Unquestionably the most exciting addition coming to the Disneyland Resort in California and Walt Disney World in Florida soon is the Star Wars land called Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge. The E-Ticket ride, or premier attraction, in Galaxy's Edge will allow guests to pilot that most iconic of ships from a galaxy far, far away, the Millennium Falcon. Now, we have our first glimpse at what that ride might look like. Check it out:
This test footage is just a small sample, and the resolution isn't the best, but what this video from WDW News Today conveys is scope and ambition. Every Star Wars fan worth their salt has always dreamed of two things: wielding a lightsaber and piloting the Millennium Falcon, and this ride looks like it will come about as close to approximating the latter as technology will allow. The test footage debuted at the GPU Technology Conference 2018, and as you can hear in the video, there is a lot of advanced stuff at play here. According to Uproxx, the Disney Imagineers teamed up with NVIDIA and Epic Games to bring this hyper-realistic, virtual reality experience to life. You can hear the guy in the video mention that the real-time footage is rendering on 8 GPUs at an insane resolution.
The Millennium Falcon ride looks to be taking what Star Tours does and blasting into hyperspace. Being aboard a ship in a galaxy far, far away is what Star Tours has done for years, but as you can see by the explanation of the field of view and the dome in the video, this is going beyond that. Star Tours is an on-rails type experience. This new ride looks to take that Star Tours premise and mix in the immersion of something like Soarin' and the objective-based interactivity of Mission: Space to create something truly special.
The ride will put guests in the cockpit where they will pilot, prepare for hyperspace and shoot blasters. It sounds like you will have a level of control in the ship to look around at your surroundings. It also appears that your performance in the mission may actually have fun consequences in the park. Perform well and you earn galactic credits (whatever those do), and if you fail, you can end up on a bounty hunter's list and have trouble at the cantina. This is all probably tied in to the Disney Magic Bands that act as tickets in the park, and will just add to the complete immersion for guests in the remote outpost planet of Batuu.
Piloting the Millennium Falcon may be the signature attraction, but there will be a whole world of exciting Star Wars adventures in a land that is even more authentic than the movies and will feature some unique merchandise. And lest we forget at Walt Disney World, there will also be a Star Wars-themed hotel that will connect to the parks that looks positively insane.
Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge is expected to open at Disneyland Resort and Disney's Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World in 2019. Although, you may want to go ahead and get in line now, it'll probably save you some time.